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PDF-search vs Devonthink vs Foxtrot vs Devonsphere

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Posted by Taxyovio
Jul 21, 2021 at 05:30 PM


I’ve only used PDF Search on an iPad Pro. I find the results surprising as well but in a bad way. Often it misses the documents that I’m sure to contain the keywords. This makes a an untrustworthy search engine. For now I’ve reverted to rely on DEVONthink to index PDFs.


Posted by MadaboutDana
Jul 22, 2021 at 08:58 AM


Hm, that’s interesting. I know I’ve had suspicions about PDF Search’s accuracy on macOS before (I haven’t used the iOS version – actually, I didn’t realised there was one), but they released an update recently which claimed to have resolved “certain issues”.

Still, no worries: I’m perfectly happy with FoxTrot!


Posted by Amontillado
Jul 22, 2021 at 05:57 PM


I have a friend who wants to search and relate PDF files on a Windows machine.

Devonthink’s “see also” function is pretty cool, but he needs that kind of functionality in Windows.

Windows-based suggestions appreciated.


Posted by MadaboutDana
Jul 23, 2021 at 09:50 AM


Well, the ultimate tool on Windows is dtSearch (even now), but it’s relatively expensive, so maybe he could look at e.g. X1 or Copernic (I used Copernic when I was still on Windows). Having said that, an oldie but goldie favourite is the professional version of “Agent Ransack” (itself a very good freebie search tool): FileLocator Pro. It’s been going for a long time and is very precise (also supports a whole bunch of search functions like regex etc.)

Cheap ’n’ cheerful options include, as already mentioned, Agent Ransack and the excellent DocFetcher (also an oldie but goldie).

Interestingly, a couple of recent search-tool reviews I read rate FileLocator Pro above Copernic, especially if you want to build big indices. But IANAWU, so can’t advise you further.


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